What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this series picks up two years after the The Naked Brothers Band Movie. Because much of the material is inspired by the real-life group of friends who star in it, tweens (especially boys) will find a lot that parallels their own experiences. The show has friendly "pranks" (like rigging a bucket to dump water on a boy's head), short-lived (though heated) verbal arguments, and some adolescent sexy-ish references. On the positive side, each episode showcases the stars' impressive singing and songwriting talents.
What's the story?
Billed as a "rockumentary" about the celebrity lifestyle of kid rock 'n' rollers, THE NAKED BROTHERS BAND takes a fantasy look at the behind-the-scenes stuff that fans rarely see from their musical idols. Cameras follow the band members from their hangout to rehearsals to music award shows, capturing their struggles with friendship, loyalty, fame, love, and all the uncertainty of early adolescence. Real-life brothers Nat and Alex Wolff star as themselves, along with longtime friends/onscreen band buddies Thomas Batuello and David Levi. Quassim Middleton (who replaces original group member Joshua Kaye) and Allie DiMeco (who plays Nat's love interest, Rosalina) round out the cast. The show picks up two years after where its parent movie, The Naked Brothers Band Movie, left off. The band members have resolved their differences and reaffirmed that their friendship and shared love of music are more important than fame and fortune. Nat (age 11) and Alex (8) continue to write all of the songs, which are featured in each episode's performances and music videos.
Is it any good?
Written and directed by the Wolffs' mom, Polly Draper (thirtysomething), The Naked Brothers Band was inspired by the boys' youthful musical talents, which date from their preschool days. The series keeps it all in the family, with Draper's jazz composer husband, Michael Wolff (The Arsenio Hall Show), co-starring as Nat and Alex's musically inept (onscreen, that is) dad. And Draper's niece, Jesse, lends her talents as the Wolff boys' flighty-but-devoted babysitter.
All in all, the series fares far better than the parent movie did. A little maturity has gone a long way for the young stars, who now tend to steer clear of divisive subject matter and stick to topics that their tween audience will relate to -- like the awkwardness of a budding romance between Nat and Rosalina and the occasional playful prank among the guys (vapor rub instead of hair gel -- ouch!).
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the characters' relationships. Do any of the relationships within the band resonate with your tweens?
Are the band members' lifestyles far-fetched? Tweens, how do you feel about fame? Would you like to be famous, or is it not worth it?
Are the characters good role models? Why or why not?